Case Quizes Clinical Cases

Revisiting: Asthma Since Childhood

lewis answers april image
Written by Elaine Lewis

Elaine presents the answer to last month’s quiz.

Gather around everyone, it’s time to revisit last month’s quiz, “Asthma Since Childhood”. Did anybody get the right answer? Did anybody come up with another face to add to our Sweet Soul Music poster?

Are you asking me, Mom?

No Shana, that was a rhetorical question–and please don’t ask me what “rhetorical” means, just roll the tape!

OK, Mom, here it is again, and….action!



Shana, not now, I’m trying to find another picture for our “Sweet Soul Music” poster, you know…the one you won First Prize for at the school Black History Month Contest?

Yes, I remember winning that award so well; because when they called my name, you were at the Food Table eating Potato Salad–again!

I was? But Shana, it was potato salad!!!!! Alright, I plead guilty! I never got a picture of you accepting your award!  (Come to think of it, they also had tuna sandwiches, pickles and potato chips!  Mmmmm….) Anyway, go stand next to your prize-winning poster and I’ll take your picture now. And here she is, ladies and gentlemen, the winner of the Black History Month Arts Contest, Miss Shana D. Lewis!!!!!

Mom, now that we’ve wasted even more time, don’t you think you should get started with the March Quiz?

Yes, here’s the question:  Whose picture should we put on our poster next?

MOM!!!! You have to ask a homeopathy question!

Geez, when did the ezine become so narrow in scope?


OK, OK!  HERE’S THE CASE. Ahem! The patient says she has asthma and has had it since childhood. She’s 40 now. She says her asthma results in a cough, a dry cough. The aggravation time is around 10 or 11 P.M. She’s worse lying on her back, worse relaxing, worse during sleep, sleeps on her right side, she made a big point in saying she’s worse for windy weather/being out in the wind. She’s worse rainy weather, better for cold air, better sitting up/leaning forward, opens the window at night, she gets hot in bed, sticks her feet out, she’s worse for deep inspiration; she feels pressure on the chest, has a choking feeling. Other information: Aversion to eggs (3), desire for milk (3), loves animals and Delusion: someone is behind her. Her nature: forceful and outspoken.

The first remedy I picked was wrong. The day after I gave it to her, she was still coughing! And the cough was really getting on my nerves!  It was a dry, hollow, brassy cough and it was going on constantly! I said, I have got to do something about this cough! So, it was at that point I gave her __________30C in a bottle of water, five succussions before each dose, and I told her to take it 3 times a day or when she starts to cough. Well, immediately after the first dose, the coughing stopped! It was amazing, I couldn’t believe it! So what do you think it was? Write to me at [email protected] and let me know. Oh, and let me know who the next face should be on our Sweet Soul Music poster!

Mom!  I doubt that our readers even know what soul music is!  Better play the video by Arthur Conley:


You’re right as usual, Shana! This is an anthem of the ’60’s, everybody!  “Sweet Soul Music” by Arthur Conley. See you all back here in April!





Kali carb.






Greetings, everyone, glad to see you back! How did we do? Well, first of all, this letter from Maryam from Pakistan just flew in:

Hi Elaine!
Hope you are fine,
my new kitten, which I named Elaine (at your request) is also fine.

Awwwwwww……Little Elaine Lewis!

She is becoming sooooo naughty…

Hey! Don’t let her get away with anything! Little Elaine Lewis has to make a name for herself; and I only want her going to the best schools!

Anyways, come to the point. I have confused between Rhus tox and Sulphur, I also think about Aconite.

Oy vay!

Actually some symptoms are very striking of rhus tox, for example Agg in rainy weather, desires milk and worse relaxing but she feels better in cold air and rhus tox worse in cold air.

Yes, that does present a problem….

I think of Aconite because she was aggravated in windy weather and her cough is so violent…

Well, be careful, I don’t think I used the word “violent”.

…and dry ,but aconite also worse in cold air so I am confusing.

It is confusing because Aconite is famously worse for cold dry windy weather; but, they are better from fresh air, and worse from warm rooms! But the aggravation time is wrong for Aconite. Aconite is worse at midnight. This case is worse before midnight.

Now come towards Sulphur.
Sulphur covers almost all the symptoms but not all in first grade.
Aggravation at night
Aggravation during sleep
Worse relaxing

You know what? We’re not going to get anywhere with this symptom, because Sulphur is a 2 for lying down agg., and a 2 for lying down amel.!

Worse windy weather


Worse lying on back


Worse lying on right side
Hot in bed
Sticks the feet out from bed
Opens window at night
Desires milk (Although sulphur is disagreed by milk but it is of 3rd grade in kent repertory)

I don’t think you can use Desires Milk for Sulphur. It’s only a 1 under that (we shouldn’t confuse our readers: by 3rd grade, you probably mean it gets a 1, but, it’s confusing; so, let’s clarify by saying, 1=plain type. 2=italics, 3=BOLD. So, Sulphur is very badly indicated in the Repertory for “desires milk” as it’s only a 1; whereas, it’s a 2 for “aversion to milk” and a 3 for “milk agg.”

Aversion, eggs

Yes, aversion to eggs definitely goes for sulphur.

Dry, teasing cough mostly at night

Did I use the word “teasing”? I don’t think so.

Better in open air
Better sitting
Worse deep breathing
Great load on chest

Kent says,”it cures asthmatic bronchitis when symptoms agree”
and “sulphur has a most violent cough that racks the whole frame”

But I never said it was a violent cough. It was an annoying cough–to me!

And we know that sulphur is the king of anti psoric and clears up the case.

The aggravation time is all wrong for Sulphur. Sulphur is worse in the middle of the night or towards morning. But, nonetheless, you make a good case for Sulphur.

In spite of these remedies,medorrhinum is a remedy which contains the two remaining symptoms,the mental symptoms,i.e,
Loves animals and delusion of someone behind her

Yes, that’s true, and if you can match the delusion, that may be more important than matching the other symptoms, especially if they’re from rubrics with dozens of remedies in them, like dry cough at night–not much value in that symptom because dry cough is common, and cough worse at night is also common. But, even having said that, as interesting as the delusion is, does it have anything to do with the cough? Does she say, “Every time I get this stupid cough, I feel like there’s someone behind me”? No.

but it does not cover totality

Don’t think you have to cover the totality of symptoms. It’s very rare that this happens. People will present to you their acute case and chronic case all mixed together, and you have to know how to separate the two and look at just the acute problem and use the chronic symptoms, like aversion to eggs, as eliminators if you’re down to two remedies and one desires eggs and one doesn’t.

So that’s my analysis whether right or wrong. So I will vote to “Sulphur”

You know, Maryam, she might be a constitutional sulphur; but, we need a cough remedy! I know there are people who say, “The constitutional remedy will cure every complaint a person has!” It’s an interesting, appealing thought; but, what does it mean in practice? In practice it means that a patient comes in with a cough and you have to take a 2 hour case, asking every question from “What was your childhood like”, to “Do you like ice cream?”! Frankly, it’s ridiculous.

There is a way to take an acute case, I’ve written plenty of articles about it, and yet we are told to unlearn that and find the constitutional remedy for every person who walks in the door. This is supremely impractical, and we’ll have no way of offering homeopathy to lay people, ordinary people, because we’ll be saying to them, “You’re not smart enough to practice homeopathy for your family and friends or yourself, you have to be able to take a two hour constitutional case, which you obviously don’t know how to do, so, forget it!” This is not the kind of message we want to be sending around the world. Hold on, I have to eat my sandwich.

So, here’s what we have: We have a constant dry, hollow-sounding cough that’s worse before midnight, worse lying, worse during sleep, worse from winds (did you know there’s a rubric, “Coughing: wind, coughing in the”?), better cold air, better leaning forward, with a concomitant choking feeling in the throat. So this is basically our case. I have to pick up Shana from school now.  Bye, Maryam, talk to you soon…..


Now, another one of our readers, Maria, writes from Greece, and, let’s see what her answer is:

Hi Elaine, I think the remedy is Spongia. I thought of hepar too, because the aggravation time fits and is also worse windy weather. I hope I picked correct 🙂

You did! You did!

I was confused at beginning for the delusion someone is behind her,

I know! Because of that, I gave her Lachesis at first–also because of sleep agg. and choking feeling.

the uncovered feet as well but then I thought this must be from her constitutional remedy.

Yes, that’s what I thought too.

I am curious which one it is! well maybe at another quiz 😛 (dont laugh, I thought of medorhinum and sulfur.)

Ha-ha-ha-hee-hee-haHAAA!!!!  But anyway…. let’s face it, a Spongia cough is a Spongia cough (dry, harsh, barking)…am I right? So I looked it up in Morrison’s and guess what it says? “Asthma worse at night or during sleep…better leaning forward.” I was shocked! Then I went to the repertory and guess what? It’s a 3 under “Constant cough”, it’s a 3 under “Throat: choking” and it’s a 2 under “Coughing: lying down agg.” Morrison also has, “Cough worse before midnight.” And as if all that weren’t enough, it’s a 3 under “Generals: winds agg.” So, you might say, this case is a slam-dunk for Spongia!

Well I read Clarke’s description (where he compares lachesis with spongia also) and it just clicked and I chose spongia.

You did the right thing!

Wow I am so happy!!!!!!

And there goes Maria, sailing off into the sunset! Bye-bye, Maria! Oh wait! You didn’t tell me what picture to add to Shana’s award-winning Sweet Soul Music poster! Maria…..Maria….? Maria! I just met a girl named Maria….and suddenly that name, will never be the same, to meeeeeeeeee….Maria…….

MOM! Get a hold of yourself! No one here has seen “Westside Story”!

West side story

They haven’t?  Why not????

Now, why don’t you tell everyone the picture you added to my Sweet Soul Music poster?

I added Jimi Hendrix.  Here he is with “Fire”:

 Jimi Hendrix

Let’s congratulate our excellent winner–Maria! Bye-Bye, see you next time!

About the author

Elaine Lewis

Elaine Lewis, D.Hom., C.Hom.
Elaine is a passionate homeopath, helping people offline as well as online. Contact her at [email protected]
Elaine is a graduate of Robin Murphy's Hahnemann Academy of North America and author of many articles on homeopathy including her monthly feature in the Hpathy ezine, "The Quiz". Visit her website at: and


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